NAMING NAMES: Fired Iowa GOP Staffer’s Complaint

A fired Iowa statehouse staffer has released her new complaint with the Iowa Civil Rights Commission where she identifies those who either harassed her, said inappropriate comments or tolerated the improper behavior, and also for the first time publicy, she details what she said happened.

Kirsten Anderson served as the senate Republicans’ communications director for five years before she got fired in May.

On May 19th, two days after she got fired, in an interview exclusive interview with Channel 13, Anderson claimed she was harassed by male staffers and senators.

Monday, she followed up those allegations with the civil rights commission complaint.

Read the full ICRC Complaint here. (WARNING: Some of the language is graphic.)

Anderson claims she asked higher ups at the office to update the sexual harassment policies. She said she provided them with documentation detailing the improper behavior she faced. Anderson says instead of considering her claims they fired her the same day.

Anderson called the office environment “toxic” and said the conditions existed before the current legislative session. She said male staffers and senators used sexist language, commented about her body and her clothes.

In her civil rights commission complaint, Anderson cited 4 people who work in the senate Republicans’ offices:

Senate Minority Leader Bill Dix, of Shell Rock. Although she told Channel 13 Dix did not harass her. She said he failed to stop the inappropriate behavior.

Ed Failor, Junior, Dix’s senior assistant

Jim Friedrich, senior analyst

Eric Johansen, staff director

Dix told Channel 13 late Monday afternoon that he wouldn’t comment on the claims because he hadn’t seem them. Failor said the attorney general’s office advised him not to comment on the matter.

Here are Dix and Failor’s previous comments May 19th:

Failor told Channel 13 that the real reason Anderson got fired was because of her performance. Failor said, “She was terminated for cause, which has to do with her work product, which had been brought to her attention months ago. And it didn’t improve.”

Dix said, “Looking at the situation, Kirsten has made some assertions on her part. From my standpoint, this is strictly an issue of her career performance.”

And because Anderson’s performance hadn’t improved, Dix said, “She had been notified her job could be in jeopardy. It should have not come as a surprise to her that her employment was terminated.”

Dix said he doesn’t tolerate harassment in the office. He said, “From my perspective, we’ve been offering a calm and professional climate for her to work in.”

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